Tuesday, 7 April 2020

Government must come clean on PPE


“The Government needs to come clean on the reason why many frontline health workers can't get PPE”, says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“I am hearing many stories from health workers about a lack of PPE on the frontline.

“That clearly signals there’s an issue with the raw materials, the manufacturing, or the logistics.

“But we’re also told by David Clark and Ashley Bloomfield that the Ministry of Health has sufficient stocks of PPE ready to be used.

“Either we’re swimming in PPE, as the Minister and Director-General keep telling us, or frontline health workers can’t get it, as they keep telling us. Both stories can’t be true.

“Clearly the problem is that the Ministry and the DHBs are not doing a competent job of getting existing PPE to frontline health workers.

“Health workers are also being threatened with sanctions if they wear additional PPE in the course of their duties.

“Under the Health and Safety at Work Act, organisations have a legal obligation to ensure the health and safety of workers.

“The Minister and the Ministry must remind DHBs and hospitals of their obligations and send a clear signal that health workers can wear extra PPE if they choose to.

“Our health workers are doing an incredible job under enormous strain and must feel safe.

“We can’t afford to have a widespread loss of confidence in the Government’s competence at a time when New Zealanders need to act collectively against COVID-19.”